It's "literally Russian roulette," said Bill O'Reilly about smoking pot.
Like many of his kind, O'Reilly's response to Colorado's new marijuana legalization law is ignorant and simply out-of-touch. The Daily Show couldn't help but poke fun at his most recent rant on legalized marijuana, but this isn't nearly the first time a conservative has made a fool out of his or herself on this issue.
Here's a roundup of responses from those on the right to the marijuana legalization movement:
1. It's a gateway drug
Mitt Romney, who opposes legal marijuana in all forms, emphasizes what it means to be out-of-touch every time he opens his mouth about this issue (or just every time he opens his mouth in general).
By writing it off as a dangerous "gateway drug," Romney fails to understand what an important issue legalized marijuana is in America. As a politician, you don't get to choose which issues are and aren't important to people. You also don't get to decide who is and isn't important, as he did with this medical marijuana patient.
2. Alcohol abuse is enough of a problem without legalizing weed
We can't get too far into pointing out the ignorance of the right without mentioning Ann Coulter, can we?
Coulter debated Cheech and Chong on the issue in 2009, and they made the argument that pot should be on the same legal level as alcohol. Coulter admitted that there is in fact a problem with alcohol abuse, but we shouldn't have two similar issues in this country. But what's bothersome about this is that she insisted marijuana is just as dangerous to your health as alcohol, which is a common misconception. Alcohol is known to have a severe impact on your health, and the alcohol-related death statistics in America speak for themselves. Putting the two in the same category of dangerousness is erroneous.
3. Weed smokers are mysterious
In 2012, pro-legalization groups in Colorado raised over $2 million to campaign for Amendment 64, to which Dana Perino repeatedly asked, "Who are these people?" Andrea Tantaros said that if legalized marijuana couldn't pass in a state as liberal in California, it doesn't have a shot going over on Colorado. Of course, she would end her point by depicting the pro-legalization groups as just stoners sitting on couches. Perino then responded to Tantaros by saying that there are more dispensaries for medical marijuana in Colorado than there are Starbucks. But she still has no idea who those people are.
4. The children! The children! My god, think of the children!
Over time, marijuana has been demonized to the point where people can't associate it with a successful person. Elisabeth Hasselbeck did this issue no favors.
When Olympic gold medalist Michael Phelps was caught taking a bong hit, Hasselbeck attacked him by using the "he's supposed to be a role model" argument. After several attacks like this and losses of sponsors, Phelps apologized. Don't smoke pot, kids. If you do, you might end up like Michael Phelps, perhaps the greatest swimmer of all time.
5. It's immoral
In response to Bill O'Reilly's claim mentioned earlier, Jon Stewart made what was possibly the best comeback to the closed-minded right regarding this issue. According to conservatives, the difference between a bong hit and pointing a gun at your own skull is that the gun can kill you instantly and must never be criminalized or restricted in any way ever.
In addition to his pro-gun and anti-pot position, O'Reilly even attacked journalists who are covering marijuana reform in Colorado. Apparently, the Denver Post is only going to tell you where the "best bud" is and promote the use of an intoxicant. This strike against the marijuana legalization movement — like all of his others — is made out of fear. If you're going to let Bill O'Reilly scare you into thinking that marijuana is as horrible as he makes it out to be, chances are, you could use a little pot.